Amorphis – Circle (2013)
Finnish band Amorphis started out as a death metal band, but turned to prog and folk metal forms in more recent years.
While the overall thrust is metal, I think that Circle has a very “European” sound, I am reminded of long curly blonde hair on bedenimed German metallers. Other times, rather curiously, I can imagine Amorphis being one of the outsider Eurovision acts (just listen to the vocals of Hopeless Days). The folk melodies aren’t overplayed and add a lot without being too cheesy, guitars often taking the melodies rather than the more traditional instrumentation. And cheesy is a good word to describe this album; just listen to the folky melody on Mission, or the flute intro to Narrow Path. It is a lot of fun, but I find it difficult to take it perhaps as seriously as Amorphis do.
There are certainly elements of both death and prog, such as the intro to Hopeless Days, or the organ solo in Nightbird’s Song.
Amorphis live up to the homonym of their name; they are somewhat amorphous and, as such, are able to turn to and fit into any shape they fancy, a bit of folk, a bit of prog, a bit of melodic death metal.
A great deal of fun overall.
Favorite tracks: The Wanderer, Narrow Path, Nightbird’s Song.
Spotify link: Amorphis – Circle